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    Home is where your heart takes you. These five local couples decided to escape the familiar for destination weddings. Read about each couple's special day below.


    Brea Wilson and DeArejon “Keeb” White

    Wed on October 10, 2018
    Brooklyn, New York

    Photographer:  Larisa Shorina Photography, New York City
    Attire: Wedding gown from Bridal & Formal in Cincinnati. Blue Calvin Klein suit from Men’s Wearhouse.
    Hair: Bangs N Brows, Brooklyn
    Makeup: Rese’s Makeup Artistry, Brooklyn

     “(The ceremony) was on the rooftop of 68 Jay Street in Dumbo, Brooklyn,” Brea says. “After the ceremony, we strolled around the streets to take pictures, and then hung out in Manhattan until 2 a.m. It was a good night!

    “Personally, I wanted the big wedding with the 200-plus guest list. Keeb never wanted that. We ultimately decided to travel away, and we’re both very happy that we did. We didn’t have to go crazy with planning a huge wedding. We wish we would have hired a wedding planner. It would’ve been helpful to have someone more experienced and also more familiar with the area to assist us. And maybe we should’ve shared the surprise with more of our close family and friends prior to the big day/announcement.”


    Taiesha N. Washington & Ke’Onda L. Jarmon

    Wed on June 23, 2018
    Henderson Beach State Park, Destin, Florida

    Photographer: Michael Hammer
    Attire: Gilded Gown, Knoxville, Tennessee
    Hair: Woodrow Trumbo; A’bril Elon, celebrity hair stylist, Atlanta
    Makeup: Nadiyyah Shabazz

    “Visit the destination at least twice before the wedding day,” says Ke’Onda, who with Taiesha traveled to Destin to seek out and confirm vendors. “Do your homework on hotels, flights and restaurants that are cost-efficient for everyone invited. A destination was always a dream of mine. The ocean is therapeutic, and that is how I envision a strong marriage. We know how aggravating it could be trying to invite everyone and to greet everyone who attended. Once we announced that we were having a destination wedding, the majority of our family and friends were no longer disappointed they didn’t get an invite. But we didn’t get to invest much in our local small businesses of Louisville. Although several were used, we wanted to support more.”


    Brooke Wethington & Scott Morrison

    Wed on June 7, 2018​
    Lowndes Grove Plantation, Charleston, South Carolina

    Photographer: Firm Anchor
    Flowers: Out of the Garden, Charleston
    Hair and makeup: Meg Workman, Charleston
    Attire: Dress from Robert Bullock. Suit from JoS. A. Bank.

    “The lifesaver to planning my wedding was Instagram,” Brooke says. “I would search hashtags of Charleston weddings. When you plan a destination wedding, you can cut costs by getting married on a weekday — venues are almost half the cost on a Thursday! I was under the impression that planning a destination wedding can be a way to cut costs — less people? — and that is false. I went significantly over my budget due to traveling and adding small details to make my guests more comfortable. And I came home with too many personalized koozies and ChapSticks, so that’s a detail I may have left out. It was the best time having all of my favorite people on the beach just relaxing for days before and after. I strongly suggest having a large area for people to hang out. We rented a large house with a pool. So fun!”


    Hannah Sells & Geoff Lyvers

    Wed on July 21, 2018
    Lost River Cave, Bowling Green

    Photographer: Zoe Dannenmueller
    Hairstylist: Kimberly Spears (and helping hand throughout the day)
    Attire: Ivory and stone Galina tank ball gown with layered tulle skirt from David’s Bridal and white high-top Converse. Khaki Tommy Hilfiger blazer, khaki Calvin Klein slim-fit pants, navy Roundtree and Yorke leather suspenders, chestnut Crevo Camden leather boots.
    Makeup: Maggie Bellamy with Makeup by Maggie and the Browtique

    “You don’t have to have a destination elopement to elope,” Hannah says. “You can elope somewhere cool in public in the town that you live in and skip the cost of a venue and save an incredible amount of money. If you choose somewhere in nature, you don’t even need to buy decorations. If you’re worried about celebrating with or including friends and family, just have a reception after the elopement. Your wedding day and wedding planning are both as hard and as stressful as you make them be.”


    Kaitlan Bondurant & Robin Herrington

    Wed on October 20, 2018​
    Cliffview Lodge, Red River Gorge, Campton, Kentucky

    Photographer: Mickie Winters
    Flowers: Bel-Air Florist, Versailles, Kentucky
    Attire: Dress from Madison James. Suit from Wildfang.​
    Hair: Lavish Looks, Sparkle Beeler

    Kaitlan is from Cincinnati and Robin is from Louisville, so Red River Gorge was a good meeting point between the two locations. “Standing in front of the beautiful gorge with all of our friends and family was magical,” Robin says. “We had 60 guests and it was the perfect amount for us. We were able to give all of our guests personal attention, and by the end of the weekend everybody felt like one big family.

    “(Instagram is) great for initial inspiration, but we started to second-guess our planning decisions after seeing a gorgeous escort card table or fun food station. Trust your instincts and believe in your vision. And get a wedding planner. For real. Jeannie Smith, our planner and coordinator (AshBy Wedding & Event Planning), knew what vendors would be appropriate for what we wanted and, more importantly, knew the vendors that would be willing to trek out into the wilds of Kentucky.”

    This originally appeared in the Spring/Summer 2019 issue of Louisville Bride. To subscribe to Louisville Magazineclick here. To find us on newsstands, click here.

    If you are interested in submitting your wedding to Louisville Bride, please email editor Mary Chellis Nelson at mcnelson@loumag.com.

    Cover photo: Kaitlan & Robin's wedding at Red River Gorge // by Mickie Winters

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